I am an avid fly fisherman and employ the bait and switch tactic all March thru September in Southwest Wisconsin’s Driftless area. My grasshopper pattern from mid July through the end of the season floated on top while the scud or tiny beadhead nymph drifted18 inches subsurface. That’s good fly fishing strategy on a trout. What isn’t acceptable are some of the bait and switch schemes I see in the world of Regenerative Medicine approaching a charlatan designation. Let me explain.

From the University of Wisconsin-Madison News. “Developing a new drug takes enormous amounts of time, money and skill, but the bar is even higher for a promising stem-cell therapy. Many types of cells derived from these ultra-flexible parent cells are moving toward the market, but the very quality that makes stem cells so valuable also make them a difficult source of therapeutics.” “Just like drugs, stem cells for clinical trials must be produced under a demanding regulatory regime.”

At Regenexx, we use your stem cells derived from your bone marrow and concentrate them in full accordance with the FDA guidelines. That is the only way degenerative arthritis of a joint may be treated in the US at this time. While there are several clinical trials taking place with tissue engineered for a geographically limited cartilage defect that may lead to osteoarthritis, to the best of my knowledge, none is based on the treatment of an arthritic joint. I was absolutely amazed earlier this week to surf the net and understand what might be on-line in attempting to attract patients to a given Regenerative Medicine clinic. From adipose derived stem cell advertisements to address your arthritis to misleading claims of third party reimbursement.  From bedside stem cell machinery to harvesting cells without imaging from sources other than the Pelvis; “Caution, you are entering the no spin zone” as is announced nightly on cable news.

Fact: Only bone marrow from the pelvis is of value. Not all cells aspirated from the bone marrow are Mesenchymal Stem cells. The frequency of MSCs in the buffy coat of the bone marrow concentrate derived from the posterior superior iliac spine is around 30/million nucleated cells. The aspiration of marrow from sources other than the pelvis yields almost no Mesenchymal Stem Cells in an adult. Stay tuned on this one as Regenexx has identified a means of extracting up to 7 times more stem cells from the concentrate derived from the pelvis

Fact: Stem cells are only of value when liberated from adipose tissue by collagenase. It is illegal in this country to use collegenase liberated stem cells in the skeleton.

Fact: There are no billing codes in Regenerative Medicine recognized at this time by third party payers. Stem cell intervention is not indemnified by a third party.

Fact: Prolotherapy is not considered a scientific process and of no value when used independent of Bone Marrow Aspirate Concentrate in treating arthritis

 

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